I turn 29 today, leaving me with one more year to enjoy my “twenteen” years. It’s not so bad, really. I’m actually glad I survived long enough to see my 29th birthday. I’m not sick or anything, but my family and I have been through so much already that I can’t help but believe that every day I’m alive is a blessing — life is something to enjoy and be grateful for. I’m not exactly psyched about seeing a gray hair or two more often than I had in my early twenties, but I haven’t reached the point of needing to dye my hair totally black (except maybe to cover up hair highlights when I had my passport renewed)… not yet anyway 😛

Being so near my 30th year, I cannot help but think back to things I’ve done, and haven’t. When I was younger, my mom said I was a little girl with big dreams. I can’t remember exactly when I made it (probably sometime during my emo-teenage years, but I had this short mental list of “10 things to do before I turn 30.” With only a year left, it’s quite interesting to see if I’ve somehow managed to do some of those things in my list.

  1. Run a successful business – getting there! We’re not exactly swimming in millions, but I have to humbly admit that we’re doing much better than most start-ups so I’m crossing this out
  2. Get featured in a business magazine – done, Entrepreneur Philippines, July 2010 issue, “Homemade: Web Design
  3. Appear on TV – done
  4. Travel the Philippines – done… More or less 😛
  5. Learn to swim – err.. not yet 😛
  6. Drive a car – done, but no driver’s license yet!
  7. Buy a brand-new car – done, with Dad and hubby’s help, of course
  8. Go camping – not yet!
  9. Lead a good cause – done, co-founded the Philippine Blog Awards
  10. Teach – done, WordCamp and other talks

So that’s 7 out of 10. Not so bad 😛

And yep, “having kids” really isn’t part of my “before 30” list. I’ve never been the type of kid who played “make-believe I’m Mommy.” My sister and I both had overactive imaginations, but the most we did in “playing house” is to play “cook and customer,” where I’m the cook and my sister the customer who loved everything I pretended to cook 😀 We would line up our dolls in single file — I’ll be the teacher and my sister the teacher’s assistant who would list down the “noisy girls and boys.” We would go camping in our bedroom, making tents out of bedsheets. Anybody who left the bed would drown if she doesn’t fight the imaginary currents of the deep, fictitious sea.

I never really imagined myself becoming a mom… But from this side of the fence, the view’s different. I’ve done most of what I dreamed to do, and I’m finally beginning to want to give my life more meaning by having my own family. I’ve seen the sacrifices my parents did for me while I was growing up. I guess I was selfish, wanting to do things for myself first before having kids.

My dad was a bit strict when it came to going out of town and stuff where he couldn’t watch over me — that’s probably why I spent most of my 27th year traveling the country with my husband and our friends. My mom didn’t want me sleeping late till the wee hours of the morning playing around with my Photoshop, nor did she liked me getting into sports as there was a big chance I’ll get injured or trigger my asthma. Maybe that’s why I enjoy working so much that it gave me blessings, and that I’ve disciplined and challenged myself to run longer distances each week feeling healthier after each milestone I conquer.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t blame my parents. I’m thanking them, actually. If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t be able to do most of the things I’ve wanted to do before I turned 30. They taught me to do things at the right time — learn to be patient, not to rush things. And yes, the patience paid off.

I’ll be 30 next year. My husband and I both agreed to give ourselves a few more months before we actually start planning our family. We’re expanding our business, getting folks I can train and stand-in for me in case I needed to take a leave. I’m trying to get healthier and learn to control my asthma better. We want the best for our future family. We want our future kids to have a comfortable life, and happy, contented parents.

I’ll be running (and hopefully completing) a full marathon (42.2 kilometers) this coming March, the perfect precursor to a new path in life we’ll soon embark on. The idea of running 42.2km scares me, but what comes after scares me even more. Will I be able to handle having kids? Will I be a good parent? These questions I can’t help but ask every now and then. I want to be ready. But for now (at least for today), I’ll just enjoy celebrating another year of me 🙂